Monday, 2 June 2014

Tappecue Temperature Monitoring System Review


This month I was given the opportunity to write a review on the Tappecue Temperature Monitoring System made by Innovating Solution LLC. I received the Tappecue Temperature Monitoring System by Mail last Thursday morning. Before I begin with this review I would like to say a special thanks to Gina Bourret for providing me a sample of their Tappecue for this review!

I heard lots of good things about Tappecue from followers of my blogs and other forums that I follow. I am presently a user of the Maverick ET-732 and ET-733. I am very anxious to put this product to the test and compare it to the Maverick product that I have been using for a while now.

Before I get into this review I would like to provide a little background info of the company Innovating Solution LLC that they provided me in there press kit.

“ABOUT TAPPECUE 

Tappecue is the future of thermometers used by the meat smoking hobbyists who need freedom from the smoke of their smokers. Unlike Bluetooth and radio frequency devices that limit the distance you can roam, Tappecue offers no limitation through Wi-Fi enabled probes and a state-of-the-art mobile application, which provides users with freedom to work on home projects, get last minute supplies at the grocery store, or play a game of golf without worry. With Tappecue – You’ll always be one tap away from your barbecue!
Only being on tap away from your barbecue, Tappecue is revolutionizing the way we see cooking. Cooking is no longer a task because Tappecue simply makes cooking fun and easy through the use of social media integration and its guest mode functionality. Now, you, your friends and family can monitor the smoking session at the same time. Experience social-cooking first hand. Show up at your friend's or family's doorstep when the meat is done. Share current temperatures and get your friends involved. Post pictures of the finished results. Become the expert BBQ chef.
Coming soon recipes and video tutorials from some of the world’s greatest BBQ chefs will be posted within the app along with their rubs and sauces. Learn from the best – become the best. Impress your friends with the coolest barbecue gadget on the market today and the most delicious smoked meat you might have ever cooked!

ABOUT INNOVATING SOLUTIONS 

Innovating Solutions LLC is a software and mobile application development company founded in 2010 and located in Kansas City, MO. Gina Bourret, President of Innovating Solutions, had a vision to bring together experience and youth as to provide recent graduates opportunity to experience real world problems and business solutions all-the-while receiving fresh eyes not conditioned by business to bring creativity to the business. Innovating Solutions founders have all went through the renowned UMKC e-scholars (entrepreneurship) program and have an annex space close to UMKC making it easy for UMKC graduates and students." (source: Tappecue Press kit)

Let’s get started on this review shall we! When I received it in the mail you can see that lots of care was taken in the packaging so nothing go damaged during shipping.




The Tappecue Temperature Monitoring System comes with the following components:

4 temperature probe with 6 foot leads. The probes are of type thermistors. The probes are braided stainless steel and are 6 feet long. There is a Teflon protection where the cable meets stainless steel.
1 power supply 9vdc/800ma
1 Tappecue unit
1 Antenna
1 usb cable
1 set of instructions






You can purchase optionally better quality probes that are actually water proof and color coded for easier identification via their website.

Features of the Tappecue:

Temperature range input from 50 F to 500 F
External antennae allows for distance of the smoker/Tappecue to be as far as 180 feet spread from the wireless router/hotspot
Large LCD display on the unit
4 temperature probe input that can monitor 4 food, 2 food and 2 BBQ/smoker, or any combination of food and BBQ/smoker
1 usb port
1 power supply port
The units alerts you when the set temperature min/max is reached for your food or BBQ/smoker
Customizable probe list via the Tappecue app
Multiple mobile devices can be alerted
View real time graphs of your cooks within the app


Here’s the WIFI specs I got for the unit via their website:

External antennae allows for distance of the smoker/Tappecue to be as far as 180 feet spread from the wireless router/hotspot
Works with unsecured and secured networks
Secured networks supported
WEP-64 and WEP-128 (open mode only, NOT shared modeWPA2-PSK (AES only)
WPA1-PSK (TKIP only)
WPA-PSK mixed mode (some access points, not all are supported)

Just looking at the unit I noticed it doesn't have any gasket on the case ends to seal the unit to protect it from the elements. I would definitely place this unit in a Ziploc bag to protect it, if there’s rain is in the forecast or in high humidity areas. I loved the fact that it has longer cable on their probes then the Maverick Unit. Another thing I noticed is that this unit didn't have any clips included to hold the probe in place in the BBQ, smoker, oven, etc.., This is minor issue but we can improvise by using little foil balls to hold them in place in the BBQ. It would also be real nice to actually have a longer power cord as a standard feature with this unit since most patio decks on houses our 12 feet by 12 feet. Also a longer power cord would be more convenient for the competition BBQ circuit. Like I said these are only minor issues and don’t judge the book by its cover. I love the fact that this unit has a large LCD screen which make it easier to read temperatures. The Tappecue also comes with antenna which provides you extra 180 feet from your Wi-Fi hot spot which is amazing! The Tappecue comes with a 90 day limited warranty on all manufacturing defects.

You can see in this lid gap that it needs a gasket to protect it from the elements

Using Foil ball to hold probe in place 

Before you can actually use this system you have to go to their website and download the windows software for it. They recommend using Windows-XP but it actually works in Windows 7. You must also install the Tappecue on your IOS device with IOS firmware 6.0 or higher or Android device with a firmware of 3.0 or higher. Instead of re-inventing the wheel on the installation process of Tappecue I included a video installation created by Tappecue that will walk you through the process.

If you own an IPad 1st generation, IPhone 3G, IPhone 4 or IPod 4th Generation or lower you will not be able to use Tappecue due the fact that you can’t install IOS 6 on them. So buyers beware!

Installation and Set-up Video:


Source: You-tube uploaded by Innovating Solution LLC

As you can see from the installation video it’s actually quite easy to install, set-up and use. It only took me approximately 15 minutes to install and set it up for the first time on my Samsung Galaxie 4 phone and on my IPhone 5.

 Secure log in to your setting and monitoring screen
 Screen to view current session or start new one
 You can name the session 

 The temp probe first menu
 Some of the pre-set feature for the probes
 This is where you set your min and max temp


 Menu under the current session screen
Monitoring Screen

The app interface for the android and IOS device is pretty easy to use and the set-up of each cook through the menu is a snap. I found there app to be very user friendly and very easy to use.  I really loved there customizable probe list in the apps so that you can quickly identify each probes via the app.
After playing with the Tappecue Temperature Monitoring system with a few cooks with my two BBQ. I can definitely say that lots effort came into the creation of the Tappecue. This unit is definitely rock solid in its performance and monitored my food and grills temps without any hiccups and alerted me whenever my food reached desired internal temp and whenever my BBQ went to high or too low in temperature. My wife also tried using it with our gas oven in the house and she love it and was quite impressed with it. What totally impress me is that if you have a data plan with you cell phone and you decided to go shopping or leave your house for a few minutes you can still monitor your BBQ and food via your phone data network. This feature alone kills all there competition dead in the water! The Tappecue makes it possible for you to leave your grill area and house during long and slow cooks which is osom. You no longer have to stay within Bluetouth range as per other units! As long as you’re within your Wi-Fi range or within your mobile/cellular service area you’re good to go! If you cook at nigh like me you will love the fact that the LCD screen has a back light.




Tappecue with only two probe used! 

Since I am doing a review on this unit I decided to test its accuracy by using boiling water and ice. As you can see in this test this unit is quite accurate but will not read temperatures below 49 F. Just remember for grilling, cooking or smoking you will never have a need for lower temperature reading.

For boiling water it displayed the proper temperature but is not like instant thermometer. I also notice that this unit as about 40 second lag time in displaying the actual temp of the water.


During a 15 hour slow and low cook of pull pork! I purposely opened the lid a couple of time and left the grill to cool down to see if alarm would come in for the low set point. It actually came in alarm quite fast and notified me via my android phone and on my Iphone 4S. I also ramped up the temp and it notify me quickly when it immediately went pass the max set point! This was quite impressive. During this 15 hour cook I decided to go on a 3 hour Kayak ride in the middle of a local Lake and I was still able to monitor the temp via my cell phone network. Which was extremely impressive to be able to actually do this! I was actually quite impress with the in-session graphing of the cook withing the app! I also tested the internal temp of the meat with a Thermapen and the Tappecue was only 1.5 degree lower which is quite impressive and pretty accurate in my books. 

You can actually see where I played with temps of the grill for testing purpose


Conclusion:

I definitely recommend the Tappecue to the avid BBQer and to the pros. The installation of the software was a real breeze and the set up of the apps on mobile devices was also really easy. The Tappecue was very easy to use and to set up any min and max temperature. It monitored the temperatures accurately and alerted you immediately whenever the temperature went under or over the desired set point. I really loved the fact that I could monitor my BBQ’s while doing some shopping or going for walks through the use of my cell phone. This feature alone is worth every penny. The Wi-Fi capability of this unit gives you a bigger range then the Bluetouth units like the maverick ET-732/733. Another neat feature this unit offer is to be able to graph your cooks in real time within the app. At the end of your cooking session you can save your graph for future reference. 

Some of the issue I noticed is that the probe jacks on the unit is not attached to the plastic case which as the potential of breaking of the circuit board inside the case. So exercise care when installing and removing the probe. Also the two side caps of the unit doesn't have a gasket to seal the unit from moisture, dust, rain, etc.., This is why I recommend that you use a Ziploc bag to protect the unit from rain. It’s also missing a windows app to be able to monitor the temperatures from your computer which I hear there's a PC web app coming in the near feature to monitor temps and graphs. Also a longer power supply cord and probe holders/clip would be a nice addition. There customer service is beyond excellent from what I heard from a few of my followers. 

Overall the Tappecue is a solid unit and I would definitely add it to my BBQ accessories. This unit is rock solid with its performance and I was very impressed with its performance and ease of use! If you decide in getting one I strongly suggest in purchasing there extra care probes with the unit its worth its weight in gold!

UPDATE:

Innovating solution is coming out with a water proof case accessory for the Tappecue later this year. They are also coming out with chamber probes with clips in the near future. As you can see this company listen to there's customers and improve there products from there feedback. This is excellent to see and that proves they have excellent customer service and that they actually care about there product!


UPDATE #2

Tappecue now available in CANADA!

Tappecue is now available through Canada via Amazon website for $289CDN TAPPECUE CANADA SALES


I have been using my Tappecue now for a two year period and the unit is still going strong. I only had one software issue which was quickly resolved within 30 minutes via email. Now that's customer service! There product is built to last but Highly recommend you get the water proof Case for your units!

US SALES

The MSRP is $199 US


Here's where you can buy Tappecue: Tappecue Store

Tappecue Facebook page: Tappecue

Contact info:

Innovating Solution LLC
4747 Troost Ave. Suite 211
Kansas City, MO 64110
info@innovating-solutions.com
Tel: 913-709-2540
Fax: 816-322-8170


1 comment:

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